Green Party NI Councillor for Bangor Central, Stephen Dunlop, has called for greater clarity on how people without smartphones or internet access can secure their COVID passports.
Cllr Dunlop said: “I have been contacted by a number of elderly residents who don’t have access to a smartphone, a PC or a printer, but also have limited certified ID that can be used for verification.
“Given that variations of COVID will be with us for some time, these passports are going to become an essential social lifeline for many. On this basis, Stormont must find different ways of allowing these isolated and vulnerable residents to secure their COVID passports with greater ease.
“A number that have contacted me have expressed serious concern that with Christmas round the corner, without their passport they won’t be able to join family parties in restaurants and other hospitality venues. This would be a shame given the stress and anguish so many have experienced during lockdown and isolation. We cannot let that happen.
“Throughout the pandemic, the five-party Executive had demonstrated its inability to deal with crisis. The confusion and mixed messaging around the passport scheme is just yet another example of this.”
Anyone can phone the helpline on 0300 200 7814 which is open Monday to Sunday 8am to 8pm, the line is experiencing significant delays and applicants still need to verify their ID at a defined location.
Media contact: Jack O'Dwyer-Henry (07504410770)